National Geographic : 1926 Jul
THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE Photograph by W. H. Rau WHERE THE DELAWARE RIVER CONQUERED THE MOUNTAINS One is prone to think of rivers as following their valleys; but, as a matter of fact, in the vast majority of cases the rivers were there before the valleys appeared. What ages must have rolled by since the Delaware River began its task of cutting its present majestic way through the mountains that lie between Port Jervis and the sea! another of the great river battlefields of the world. The stories its landscape tells of Titanic struggles over watersheds, of battles over divides, and of fights without quarter over stream beds, are legion. In the geological long ago a magnificent stream occupied this great, canoe-shaped structural valley that began in southwest Virginia and ended in northwest Georgia. One branch of this river rose in south west Virginia and flowed in a southwest erly direction past Asheville, where it was joined by the other branch, which had its headwaters in the extreme southwest cor ner of North Carolina, and flowed by Murphy, Bryson City, and Waynesville to its confluence with its sister fork a little below Asheville. Their mingled waters ran along the upper valleys of the present French Broad River and Mud Creek; thence into South Carolina and out to the Atlantic Ocean. A HORDE OF ENVIOUS WATER WOLVES It was truly a beautiful region which this river drained. Underlaid with heat hardened rock, it was rugged-even more so than the Lake Toxaway-Asheville Land-of-the-Sky country, its present suc cessor.